Yesterday my son David asked me for a piggyback ride. I gave in to his request, but in my head I was thinking “We don’t have time for piggyback rides! We have fine motor skills work we have to get to!”
My kids are only preschoolers, but already there are expectations set for them by schools both developmentally and academically (for example they are expected to have good fine motor skills and be able to sit down for 20-30 minutes and stay on task) and that expectation will only rise with age.
Also in NYC, four year olds are tested for admission to tops schools and programs in both the public and private schools. To add to that, I recently read an article in the NY Times, which said that subtraction, which was once taught in first grade, is now taught in Kindergarten. So the academic standards for young kids are getting tougher by the minute.
So what should we be doing as parents? So we be focused on what skills our kids should have by a certain age and work actively on those skills at home or take a more relaxed approach towards our kids and education and let nature take it’s course?